Cell Notation and Cell Potential of Galvanic Cell

Galvanic cell is a device which converts chemical energy into electrical energy

One common example of galvanic cell is copper - silver cell

In this cell, the cathode is made of silver. Here the reduction of Ag takes place

While the anode is made of copper. Here the oxidation of copper takes place

Hence the overall reaction of copper-silver galvanic cell is given by

As you can notice, it is difficult to draw silver copper galvanic cell everytime we need to represent it

So we need a simpler representation of the galvanic cell

This is given by cell notation

For eg: The cell notation for copper - silver galvanic cell is as shown above. It is now much simpler to represent than full diagram

There are certain rules for writing the cell notation of galvanic cell

We keep the anode on the left side. This part is known as oxidation half cell

We keep the cathode on the right side. This part is known as reduction half cell

We add a vertical line to separate metal and electrolyte solution

The vertical line is there for both reduction and oxidation halfs

Finally a double vertical line is added to separate the anode and cathode part. The double line represents salt bridge

From this cell notation, we can also calculate cell potential of galvanic cell

The cell potential is the difference between the reduction electrode potential of two half cells of a battery.

Mathematically

If we are using cell notation it will be Cell potential =

Let us take an example of copper silver to understand cell potential

Reduction electrode potential of a electrode is +0.80. Hence = +0.80

Reduction electrode potential of a electrode is +0.34. Hence = +0.34

Hence the cell potential of copper-silver cell potential will be

Let revise ….

For the representation of galvanic cell ,we must follow certain rules ; Always keep anode on left side and cathode on right

Galvanic cell is represented by the vertical line and salt bridge is represented by double vertical line

The cell potential is the difference between the reduction electrode potential of two half cells of a battery

The End